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Geology of the National Parks - Death Valley

 

Death Valley dunes
Death Valley dunes. Photo by Paul Stone, USGS

Death Valley National Park Virtual Geology Field Trip

This field trip will take you to just a few of Death Valley's geological wonders. Most of the sites you'll see are right off the highway, but we've included a few side trips that take you off the beaten path. If you plan on visiting the park in person, you'll be interested in the "If you're going" link at the bottom of each page.

Death Valley field trip button Traveling through time

We've arranged the field trip stops so that you can travel through 1.7 billion years of time. The menu below lists the oldest features and rocks first, with younger rocks and features following. You may also navigate by using the clickable map link at the top of each page. Are you ready to hit the road?

Timescale in millions of years Cenozoic Mesozoic Paleozoic Precambrian geologic time scale

Death Valley Dawn - 1.8 billion years to 570 million years ago (Precambrian)

  • Badwater
    The oldest rocks - relics of the Precambrian world
  • Mosaic Canyon
    Slot canyon, deformed and polished marble

Death Valley at the Equator - 570-250 million years ago (Paleozoic)

The Earth Shook, the Sea Withdrew 250-65 million years ago (Mesozoic)

Quiet to chaos 65 million to 10,000 years ago (Cenozoic)

Death Valley Today - 10,000 years ago to present

| Death Valley Geology Home | | Virtual Field Trip | | Geologic History |
| Image gallery | |Geologist's page | | Death Valley National Park

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